Thursday, May 30, 2013

Doctrine of Law

This is "Doctrine of Law," a papercut I made for the silent auction at Temple Ahavat Shalom's gala this year. The gala and auction are being held this Sunday, June 2, and support temple activities throughout the year. If you haven't gotten your tickets yet, or if you want more information about the auction, click here. A full list of auction items is available as a PDF.

"Doctrine of Law" is an exploration of the role of Torah – the "tree of life" – in our lives, in the past and present. I see Torah as a living document, one that must be read and reread and continuously interpreted and understood for each generation; the tree will always be an appropriate metaphor for Torah. It's backed with cut-up comics and a snippet from Ye That Thirst by David Hausdorff, published by Shulsinger Brothers in Brooklyn in 1940; that snippet is how this cut got its name.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Little Green

"Little Green" is a papercut I created for the annual gala (this Saturday, June 1) at Temple Emanuel of Beverly Hills, which supports their day school, early childhood center, and religious school. I've been friends with their cantor, Yonah Kliger, since junior high – and when he asked for a piece to support their gala, I was glad to make something special for him.

"Little Green" is an exploration of the story of the Burning Bush, which the Torah tells us burns but was not consumed – represented here by the swatch of living green at the center of the bush. The sharp, jagged flames are a reflection of the clear, sharp voice of God speaking to Moses from the bush, and the light it casts is so bright as to make the sky appear dark as night.

It measures 6" x 8" but is in a fancy frame I selected for it that takes it to 17" x 22".

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Burning Bush, Open Door

I just received a copy of Open Deur, a Netherlands magazine which is featuring my "Burning Bush: Flame On" papercut in their May issue. I can't read it, but I see the name "Mozes." There is a lot of fire and flame and heat in this issue.

Plus, now I know how to write the name of this papercut in Dutch: "Brandende struik: ga door met vlammen."

Friday, May 24, 2013


It's hard to believe the end of another show is already almost here. Figured I'd share a photo of one more piece – it's called "Oppenheimer."

Upon seeing the first test of the atom bomb, which he helped create, Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer said these words from the Hindu scriptural epic, Bhagavad Gita. The power of the atom has given us good and bad, and we see a dichotomy of intention and result in the character of the Hulk, whose comics are cut up to make this background of this papercut. There’s one snippet that’s not the Hulk: the Watchmen’s Dr. Manhattan makes an appearance as well. It includes:

•    Incredible Hulk #21 (Jun 2001) – John Romita, Jr.; #38 (May 2002)
•    Incredible Hulk #9 (Aug 2012) – Michael Komarck
•    The Incredible Hulk #240 (Oct 1979), #310 (Aug 1985), #448 (Dec 1996)
•    World War Hulk: Front Line #1 (Aug 2007), #5 (Dec 2007)
•    Marvel Fanfare #29 (Nov 1986) – John Byrne
•    Hulk #11 (Jun 2009) – Ed McGuinness
•    Giant-Size Incredible Hulk #1 (Jul 2008)
•    The Essential Hulk Volume One (1999) – Bruce Timm
•    Indestructible Hulk #6 (Jun 2013) – Walt Simonson
•    Hulk & Thing: Hard Knocks #2 (Dec 2004)
•    Before Watchmen: Ozymandias #5 (Mar 2013) – Jae Lee

A color catalog of all works on display is available for download as a PDF here.

Monday, May 20, 2013

Miriam's Well – Embrace the Possibilities

I'm very pleased to share with you a photo of my latest completed papercut — "Miriam's Well"— a commission celebrating and honoring the outgoing president at my synagogue, Temple Ahavat Shalom. It measures 26" x 40" and, as usual, features cut-up comics.

While the Jewish people wandered through the wilderness they were accompanied by a wondrous well which would provide water for them at every resting-place. God created this well for the sustenance of the Israelites in recognition of the merits of Miriam, which is how it gets its name. The well followed them on all their wanderings — and wherever they halted, it halted, too, settling in position opposite the Tabernacle. The leaders of the twelve tribes would appear and chant to it, “Spring up, o well,” and water would gush forth from its depths, and shoot up high as pillars, then discharge itself into great streams. These streams demarcated areas for each of the twelve tribes to camp in, and were so powerful that people were obliged to make use of ships to visit one another. The water led beyond the encampments, where it caused to grow every conceivable kind of plant and tree; and these trees, owing to the miraculous water, daily bore fresh fruits.

This president has dedicated her time a similar nurturing of the synagogue community (as well as the larger community), welling forth with tikkun olam and justice. Her leadership has sustained this community, and helped to create an environment in which everyone can “embrace the possibilities.”

The water of the well is backed with cut-up comic books featuring famed female comic book leaders and heroes, notably Supergirl, Wonder Woman, and Batgirl. Within the swirls of color can be found speech bubbles that reflect on her presidency and her dedication to helping others.

The well is represented by the hint of a Torah scroll from a synagogue brochure, while the twelve spaces surrounding the well represent the twelve tribes, and are backed with cut-up temple materials. Above and below the well and the tribes are desert landscapes created from cut-up comics and photographic imagery of the desert in which the Israelites wandered.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Online bidding now open for
"Spring Comes to Santa Clarita"

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I created a papercut titled "Spring Comes to Santa Clarita" for the Albert Einstein Academy 2013 silent auction, which raises money for the school. It's now available for online bidding – click here for more information or to place a bid.

This landscape is typical of the Mediterranean-style climate in Santa Clarita, featuring rolling hills covered with flora and scrub in a variety of colors and patterns. And of course, it's backed with cut-up comic books.

Spring Comes to Santa Clarita
20" x 10"
Mixed media

Thursday, May 16, 2013


"Herzl" is a papercut I made based on a photograph of Theodore Herzl at the First Zionist Congress in 1897, in Basel, Switzerland. This piece takes on more significance for me now as my family is planning a trip to Israel.

However, it seems that not many people are as familiar with the original photograph as I am – which is fine; it's a touchstone for me, but not for everybody. So I thought it would be useful to present the original photo alongside my portrait, for those who are interested.

My portrait is made with cut-up Green Lantern comics – because Herzl is known for the words, "Im tirtzu, ein zo agada" – "If you will it, it is no dream." And of course, Green Lantern's ring is powered by willpower.

You can still see it live at "You did WHAT to my comics?!?",  now showing at Brave New World Comics in Newhall, California (details here). A color catalog of all works on display is available for download as a PDF here – and though many of them have sold, there are a few works still available for purchase.

Friday, May 3, 2013

"Number Theory"

I'm pleased to be donating a papercut to ANOTHER fundraising auction happening tomorrow – this one being held at Brave New World Comics on Free Comic Book Day (tomorrow, May the Fourth) to support the Newhall Public Library!

"Number Theory" is built on a structure of the ten basic Hindu-Arabic numerals (0123456789), and it's about the power of individuals working together. Each person has their particular strengths and skills and backgrounds, and they become magnified by the presence of others. We can all be heroes, and so the background texture for the cut is a collection of superheroes, representing the strength of diversity.

Interested in bidding? You do NOT have to be present to bid; just call the shop at 661 259 4745!

Number Theory
10" x 18"
Mixed media

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Spring Comes to Santa Clarita

This papercut is titled, "Spring Comes to Santa Clarita" – I made it for the Albert Einstein Academy  auction being held this Saturday night, May 4; proceeds go to support this local charter school. I modeled it on the rolling hills along Newhall Ranch Road out here in Santa Clarita, with rolling hills covered with flora and scrub in a variety of colors and patterns.

Spring Comes to Santa Clarita
20" x 10"
Mixed media